Promoting Instagram Giveaways with Visual Content

Posted in: Ideas for your websiteLast update: 19/04/22

Instagram giveaways are a great way to promote a product or grow your following. After all, who doesn’t like free stuff? But with the number of brands and businesses you’re competing with, it can get difficult to cut through the noise. And no matter how compelling your giveaway is, you may struggle to get participants. The secret? It’s all in the visuals.

In social media, the saying “don’t judge a book by its cover” doesn’t apply. In order to succeed, you have to create visually appealing content. It’s backed up by science — we remember 65% of what we see after three days, while we only remember 10% of what we hear. So if you’re giving away a product that your audience would love to win, you have to do it justice by posting visually stunning content that’s worth sharing. 

To help you, we’ve shortlisted the best ways to promote your Instagram giveaway with visual content. 

1. Choose elements that stand out

Like any marketing promo, your giveaway must begin with an announcement. To create hype, you can produce video teasers or short clips to promote your giveaway. Most small-time giveaways on platforms like Instagram are launched with a simple flat lay or poster with the mechanics typed down as a caption. While this type of content might work for some brands, if your photo isn’t eye-catching enough, it can easily be overlooked. 

promote your instagram giveaways with visual content: example from Trader Joe's

Take inspiration from Trader Joe’s (@traderjoes)! To promote the latest episode of their podcast, the brand used a poster with bold letters accompanied by an audio snippet of the most exciting part of the episode, complete with sound effects. The only moving elements of the poster are the radio waves. 

Similarly, you can create a poster with minimal moving elements and audio clips to create excitement. Think out of the box, and get creative with your content

Use apps like Instasize to help you produce and publish videos optimized for any social media platform. The app’s video editor allows you to make professional edits, apply filters, and add effects straight from your phone. 

2. Utilize the Stories formats

Your main feed might be the most important real estate on your social profile, but everyone is now on Stories. Almost all the leading social media apps have their version today. With over 500 million daily active users, Instagram Stories is undoubtedly one of the best platforms to promote your giveaway.

Take advantage of Instagram Stories’ native features, fonts, and effects to produce content that’s casual and relatable. Make sure to use hashtags so your content is searchable and geotags to target users in a specific location. By using a branded hashtag specific to your giveaway, your followers can get notified about your latest posts and updates. 

Don’t forget to create a highlight for your giveaway so participants can look back to it in case they missed your Story. 

visual content promoting an instagram giveaway with a story

For more engagement, add interactive stickers and GIFs. Check out the highlights of Benefit Cosmetics US (@benefitcosmetics) for some post ideas. Use Animoto for some ready-made templates that will help put your giveaway in the spotlight.

You can also include music from Spotify to your Story or add background audio files for more impact. Unlike in-feed videos that can be muted in a tap, Instagram Stories have no mute option unless the user manually adjusts their phone’s volume. Use this to your benefit by capturing your audience’s attention with sound bites or cool music to accompany your giveaway Story post. 

Of course, this doesn’t mean you can just rely on organic content. For maximum exposure, consider allotting a boosting budget for the duration of your giveaway. 

If you have more than 10,000 followers, use the Instagram Stories Swipe Up feature to lead your followers to your giveaway landing page.

3. Don’t forget your email list 

Everyone knows that social media is the best channel to run contests. But that doesn’t mean you should overlook cross-promoting to other channels, particularly email. It’s not only cost-effective but it also has great returns – did you know that for every dollar you put into email marketing, you get $42 back

Email is also considered the most widely used channel for customer engagement. By marketing a promo or an Instagram giveaway to your email list, you’re talking to an audience that is already interested in your brand and is more likely to respond to your content. 

visual content: email promoting an instagram giveaway

Apto Skincare invited email subscribers to join their Instagram giveaway. The brand maximized the newsletter’s space for a striking banner announcement, making it impossible to miss. Those interested to enter simply needed to click on the call-to-action button below.

If your giveaway post is already published on your feed, you can simply embed it into your email body. Make sure to include a link to your Instagram account so subscribers can automatically follow you. 

Campaigns with photos have performed better than campaigns without photos. Embedding your Instagram giveaway post will not only get you more participants, but it will also improve your email marketing performance — It’s a win-win! 

Pro tip: Always track your email’s open rate and click-through rate. Don’t forget to follow up and send a reminder email to those who haven’t responded. 

4. Showcase the prize in action 

Think of your giveaway promotional materials just like any marketing content — how would you invite customers to buy your product or service? While some products are popular enough to stand alone in a photograph, showing the prize in action is a better way to grab someone’s attention. 

Giving away a meal? Post a clip of it being prepared (#foodporn!). Giving away an outfit? Skip the flat lay and show the many ways the outfit can be styled. 

instagram giveaway being promoted with visual content

Popular online dietician announced her giveaway with a stunning photo of her kitchen and some delicious cooking getting into the oven. Instead of the typical zoomed-in product shot, the post highlights how a healthy lifestyle can still include sweet snacks. One lucky winner could learn that for themselves, as one of the prizes was a 2-week custom meal plan from Nutrition by Julie. She promoted the giveaway with a series of photos that represent the healthy lifestyle. 

There are probably thousands of Instagram giveaways happening every day; your content has to stand out

5. Spell it out

Sometimes, the best way to get someone’s attention is just to spell it out loud and clear. 

5k giveaway

UK-based bakery, The Funky Brownie Co (@thefunkybrownieco), announced their giveaway with a simple black and white post. The big, bold letters are hard to miss. If you want to break an Instagram user away from their mindless scrolling, something like this is a good idea.

While getting participants to join an Instagram giveaway is not as difficult as selling a product, you have to remember that in a platform like Instagram, visuals are everything. A giveaway is an excellent way to draw attention to your brand, increase engagement, and attract new potential customers. If your giveaway mechanics are easy enough, we guarantee that people who have never even heard of your brand will join. So always treat your visual content as your best foot forward. What impression do you want to make? 

Denise Langenegger

Search Engine Optimization Team Leader at Instasize – a content creating tool kit for anyone editing photos and online content on mobile phones.

Publication date: 2021-03-22